CNN has reported that Black voters and those who rely upon their vote have felt increasingly concerned about voting measures for this year’s elections. Many members of the Black community consider in-person voting a right and an honor hard-earned with blood, sweat and tears. In-person voting is a “community” tradition in which some voters wear their best clothing and make an effort to go out of their way to show up to vote.
One concern is that absentee or mail-in ballots, which have been proposed by many officials as the future of voting in the nation during the pandemic, might cause voter demotivation, especially among Black voters who don’t understand paper ballot mail-in processes and/or lack internet access for digital voting. Additionally, many surveyed voters expressed fear that their mail-in ballots wouldn’t be counted. Their main concern was that election officials would throw out their ballots because of racial bias and ballot errors.
Per CNN’s research, Democrats eager for the Black vote will have to do as much as possible to make in-person voting available and safe. With mail-in ballots, they will have to actively educate minority voters of all colors and guarantee that paper ballots come with prepaid postage. Even if they succeed in these areas, some states also have such strict mail-in ballot rules and control measures that minority votes might still be tossed out in the final hours. One example was South Carolina: the state requires a notary public or two separate people to act as witnesses when a voter mails in a ballot.